The thing I love about base work is being able to get out on the water and do what I love to do and that is paddle. Sometimes we can get caught up with “the workout” and forget what we love about paddling. For me its the glide! Feeling the glide especially when everything feels like its working together technique, fitness and strength is the true purity of our sport!
Base work is important, bottom line. All those hours of intensity that you put in during the race season have broken down your body and now it is time to build it back up (obviously you need to have rested a bit between race season and build season). Definitely a long time ago, when you talked about base training it was just putting in the distance, now it’s a mistake to avoid harder paddling one or two days a week. For me, base training is to get yourself physiologically, and actually mentally and emotionally, ready to go to the next step, which would be more speed-type work and harder paddling. If you go from regular mileage all the time to all of a sudden, ‘lets get on the intensity,’ you’re more prone to injury, and I don’t think you can get as much out of yourself. That dosent mean that you want to go blow yourself up two times a week, it means that we can adapt intensity into our base training program. This is where it is important to work with a coach that can build you a progressive base training program depending on your goals. We at PEF can do that for you!! Otherwise we will be posting some great base training workouts here for a few weeks that you can follow!
Week 1 base training, do this 2 or 3 times this week if you can find the time!
Warm UP: 20min easy paddling (talking pace), after the first 10min 5x30sec at can’t talk pace within the next 10min
Main Set: 3x20min at can talk but not comfortably pace with 2min rest between 20min pieces. At minute 11 of each piece do 1min of hard paddling and then settle right back into pace.
Cool Down: 10min easy paddling
Note: Its easy to lose focus on technique during the “easy paddling” parts of the workout. DONT DO THAT! STAY FOCUSED!!!! Have fun!